Chapter 1

 "Jeff, let me in! I forgot my key!" Matt banged on the hotel room door. Jeff jumped at the sound. He quickly gathered up the objects spread across the floor and shoved them into his suitcase. He dashed into the bathroom, yanked off his shirt, and cranked up the sink. He stuck his head under the water, making sure to thoroughly soak his hair. He then discarded his pants and wrapped a towel around his waist. Dripping, he stomped across the room to the door. He glared at his brother as he opened the door to let Matt in.

 "I was in the shower, you know," he snapped.

 "Sorry," Matt said, coming into the room and closing the door. "I really did forget my key, though."

 "Whatever." Jeff stomped angrily into the bathroom and slammed the door.

 Matt's eyes followed Jeff curiously. Jeff had been acting very strange recently. His behavior was starting the worry Matt. Matt had a feeling it had to do with that women who had been hanging around them recently. She had showed up a week ago at Raw. Jeff had introduced her to Matt. He had claimed to only just have met her, but he seemed to know her a lot better than that. Jeff had been cheerful and energetic that night, as opposed to his rather withdrawn nature of the past few months. He had also disappeared soon after Raw was over.

 Jeff's good mood had not lasted. He had bounced between being happy, angry, and extremely quiet. Every night he had gone out with the woman, whom he had introduced as ‘Carra'. She was tall for a women, around 5'8". She had tight blonde curls which fell just past her shoulders. She was slim but she looked strong. She carried her body proudly, her posture healthy and relaxed. She gave off a strange vibe that Matt had never felt before. It wasn't that he didn't like her, but he didn't trust her. He figured Jeff would go out with her again after Raw was over. Matt felt a little upset by that. He missed going out with Jeff. He had suggested going out many times over the past few months, but Jeff had always claimed to be busy. With what he had refused to say.

 Matt decided to take advantage of Jeff's absence to make a phone call. "Hello," he said playfully as someone picked up on the other end. "So you wanna go out tonight after Raw?" He smiled at the response. "I meant to dinner! Yeah, ok. Well, I'll see you at Raw anyway." Matt smiled as he listened. "Mmmm, sounds interesting. We'll see." He paused to listen to the reply. "I am not playing hard to get!" he exclaimed. "No, I can't, Jeff's here," he continued. "Sure he'll be out tonight, but I don't know how long. Uh huh. Well, I - " Matt looked up in alarm as the bathroom door opened. He slammed the phone down, but not in time to stop Jeff from seeing it.

 "Who was that?" Jeff asked.

 "I was just calling the front desk," Matt lied. He squinted at the clock. "I thought this clock was a little off, so I called to get the right time." ‘Good try, bro,' Jeff thought. ‘Too bad I was listening at the door.'

 "Oh. So was it off?" he asked, feigning ignorance.

 "No, it was fine. It was my watch that was off," Matt said, pretending to reset the time piece around his wrist.

 "Ok." Jeff was feeling rather mean at the moment, so he decided to toy with his brother a little. "You know, Carra and I met this really nice girl at a club last night," he said, "I think you'd really like her. And since you're not taken at the moment, I thought maybe you'd like to meet her." The answer would be no, of course, accompanied by some dumb excuse why he didn't want to. Jeff knew damn well that Matt was already seeing someone. If you could call it that.

 "You know, I think I'm just gonna stay in tonight. I've been feeling really tired lately," Matt said, exactly as Jeff had predicted.

 "Ok. Your loss, though." Jeff noticed there was a bit of something sticking out of his suitcase. He quickly reached down to shove it back in.

 "What are you doing?" Matt asked.

 "Just fixing my suitcase," Jeff covered.

 Matt crawled onto his bed and collapsed into the pillows. "I think I'm gonna take a nap." his muffled voice came out from amongst the soft pillows.

 "You do that, Matt. I'm going for a walk," Jeff said, exiting the hotel room. He made sure to take his key. In reality, he was looking for Carra. She had wandered off again and he had no idea where she was. Why couldn't that woman do what he told her? He had even paid for her to have hotel rooms this past week, but she had barely even used them. She was just too curious, always wandering off to investigate. She had to come back, though. Jeff had made sure of that.

 After searching for several minutes, he ran into her coming into the lobby. "Where have you been?" he snapped. "I don't want you to leave without me."

 "I was exploring," she told him. "I can take care of myself, Jeff. I may be new here, but I know a lot."

 Jeff gripped her arm and led her towards the elevator. "I know. But I told you to stay here." He squeezed her arm just hard enough to hurt her a little bit.

 "Let go, you jerk." Carra yanked her arm away from him. "I don't have to do what you tell me."

 "Yes you do." They were alone in the elevator as the doors closed.

 "You don't own me, you can't control me!" Carra yelled once no one else could here.

 "You are such a pain!" Jeff snarled angrily, "You were a pain when you got here, you're a pain now!"

 "Well, why don't you just send me home then?" Carra challenged.

 "Do you want to go home?" Jeff asked, still angry.

 "No, not yet," Carra replied, starting to cool off. "I just want you to stop being so possessive."

 "I'll try," Jeff promised. He glanced at his watch. "We still have a few hours before Raw. I'll grab some stuff and meet you in your room."

 "Leave your attitude at the door," Carra muttered as she got off a floor below Jeff.

 "Fat chance," Jeff mumbled.

Chapter 2

 Jeff paused to listen at the door. Matt was talking on the phone again. ‘Nap, my ass,' he thought. How long had Matt been doing this? About three weeks, he figured. Three weeks of this little secret. Jeff would've confronted Matt about it had he not been busy with other things. As it was, he just pretended to be oblivious to the whole thing. He strained to hear what Matt was saying. It was just more of the same garbage as before. Jeff didn't feel like hearing another one of Matt's crappy excuses, so he knocked on the door instead of using his key.

 Matt opened the door a moment later. "Back already?"

 "Just for a moment." Jeff walked in, pulling his key out of his pocket and dripping it on the table.

 "Hey, you didn't forget your key!" Matt protested.

 "I didn't say I did."

 "Then why did you make me open the door?" Matt wanted to know.

 Jeff shrugged as he picked up his suitcase. "You did it to me."

 "I forgot my key!" Matt cried defensively.

 "Well, I'll see you later," Jeff called as he left the room, sliding his key back into his pocket on the way out.

 "Humph. Little brothers," Matt said, shaking his head. He flopped back onto the bed, waited a moment to make sure Jeff was gone, then picked up the phone. "Hey," he said sweetly, "Sorry I keep doing that to you. He should be gone for a while this time. So who did you say was dragging you out tonight? Uh huh. Can't you get me invited? Well, who cares if he doesn't like me? If I would be a third wheel, just ditch them and do something with me. Fine. But I want you to know, I feel excluded."

 A small beep came through the telephone and a light started blinking on the phone's base. "Well, it seems I have another call. I guess I'd better answer it. I'll talk to you tonight, ok? Great. Bye." He pressed the button for the second line. "Hello?"

 "Hey Matt," Joanie's voice said, "You're not doing anything tonight, are you?"

 "Not really," Matt replied.

 "Great. Jean Paul is going out with some of his buddies, so I thought you and Jeff and Chris and I could do something," Joanie suggested.

 "Jeff's busy," Matt informed her.

 "Oh. Well, maybe I'll invite someone else then. Can you still come?"

 "Sure," Matt agreed.

 "What's Jeff doing?" Joanie inquired.

 "I assume he's going out with Carra again. You know, that blonde he's been hanging around with since last week?" Matt explained.

 "Oh yeah. They sure are a cute couple." Joanie paused. "Are they a couple?"

 Matt chewed his lip. "I don't really know."

 Joanie chuckled. "Lots of communication in the Hardy household, huh? I'm pretty sure they're a couple, anyway. Chris saw them kissing in the locker room at SmackDown! last week."

 "Really? I didn't know that." Matt felt a little insulted to be hearing about this from a third party. He's have to ask Jeff about this.

 Joanie chuckled again. "Well, I have to go now. I'll meet you outside after Raw, ok?" She hung up after Matt agreed. "He's coming," she said, turning to look at Sean. "Why do you care where he's going, anyway?"

 "He's just been bugging me lately," Sean answered. "Suddenly, he's been tagging along with me everywhere. As soon as Monty leaves, he just swoops in on us like a vulture. Does he think he has a place in DX or something?"

 "Oh come on, I've hardly seen him with you at all!" Joanie exclaimed.

 "Well, it feels like a lot," Sean complained. "Maybe he's just so annoying, every minute with him feels like forever."

 "You know what I think is weird, Sean? You're sudden dislike of him. You never had a problem with him before," Joanie commented.

 "Problem with who?" Jean Paul asked, coming up to put his arm around Joanie.

 "Matt Hardy," Joanie told him.

 "Aw, he's just jealous because Matt's the only other good-looking wrestler with dark hair," Jean Paul claimed.

 "I'm not jealous!" Sean protested. "I play a fun roll. I would never want to be stuck with Matt Hardy's little good-boy routine. Besides, I'm way better looking than either Hardy."

 "Ooh, are we debating who's the most attractive wrestler?" Chris asked as he joined the group, "Cause I win, hands down."

 Jean Paul look thoughtful. "I don't know." He turned to Joanie. "You're the only women here, who do you think is the most attractive guy in the WWF?"

 Joanie smiled. "I think he's got his arm around me right now."

 "That's not fair, she's biased!" Chris protested.

 "Tough, she picked me," Jean Paul said, squeezing Joanie's shoulder affectionately.

 "Woh, am I missing a party here? I didn't get an invitation!" Brian joked, spotting the group standing in the hotel lobby.

 "Hey Bri, who's cuter, me or Matt?" Sean demanded of his friend.

 "Well, Matt of course. You're too short to be cute," Brian teased, patting Sean on the head. Sean glared at him.

 "I'm not short."

 "Fine. You're the shortEST," Brian corrected.

 Sean sighed. "Is it time to go yet?" he asked.

 "Not for another two hours," Joanie replied after checking her watch.

 "I'm going shopping then," Sean decided, "I need to get a new sweater or two." He looked around at the others. "Anyone wanna come? BESIDES Chris," he added as Chris was just opening his mouth. "We only have two hours, and I want to get to multiple stores. Bri?"

 "Sure, I'll come," Brian said, looking thoughtful. "I can think of a few things I'd like to pick up."

Chapter 3

 Sean charged into the DX locker room that night. It was about an hour before Raw was going to start. "Bri, you're not going to believe what I just saw!" he declared. "You bought that nice grey sweater you tried on at the store, right?"

 "Yeah, so what?" Brian look up in confusion.

 "I just saw Matt Hardy wearing the exact same thing!" Sean cried.

 "That bastard!" Brian feigned concern. "How dare he copy my fashion sense? Think I should beat him up and take it?"

 "You didn't give him your sweater, did you?" Sean asked.

 Brian gave him a funny look. "Why would I do that?"

 "Well, he's like your new best friend now that Monty's gone. He wants to be, anyway. I bet he followed us there and bought the same thing just so he could look more like you." Sean scowled.

 "No offense, but I think you're a little paranoid, Sean," Brian said, laughing his friend's accusation off.

 "Oh, I don't think so." Sean half glared at his new tag team partner. "You know, if you're going to choose a new best friend, it should be me, not Matt!"

 "Ah, so that's why you've been so hostile towards Matt lately. You think that you're competing with him for my friendship. That's ridiculous, Sean."

 "Is it?" Sean said accusingly.

 "Yes, it is. So stop being silly and gear up." Brian tossed Sean his gear bag, then left the locker room shaking his head.

 "It's not ridiculous," Sean grumbled as he pulled on his DX jersey. "Damn that Hardy," he muttered, "Not only is he trying to steal my good friend, but he looked great in that sweater! Too damn great." He sat on the locker room bench glowering at the wall for a few minutes while he thought.

 "I'm going to go find him," he decided, "I'm going to find him, and I'm going to tell him off!" Sean got up to find the Hardy Boy with whom he was so annoyed. As he walked by a deserted hallway, he caught sight of the younger Hardy and his new little girlfriend perched in a corner. Come to think of it, he didn't like Jeff much either. He wondered if he should disturb them to ask where Matt was. He smiled maliciously. He would love to spoil their special little moment.

 "Hey, Hardy," he called rudely. Jeff looked up. "Where's your brother?" Sean demanded.

 "Don't know," Jeff replied helpfully.

 "Thanks a lot, Hardy." Sean stormed off to find Matt himself. It had to be something genetic with the Hardyz. Some inborn defect. Sean blinked. He hadn't realized he hated them that much. Well, he didn't, really. He just wanted to beat the crap out of Matt at the moment. He'd apologize to Jeff later. Maybe.

 "Hey Glenn, have you seen Matt or Brian?" Sean asked as he ran across the towering giant.

 "In there." Glenn pointed to the shower room door.

 ‘What the hell are they doing in there?' Sean thought. "Thanks," he said to Glenn. He shoved the shower room door open, finding the two he was looking for right inside. Brian was standing on the tiles in the middle of the narrow entranceway, while Matt was lounging against the tiled wall. He was still wearing the sweater. The two left off their conversation and looked at him when he came in.

 "What are you doing in here? You're not supposed to wear boots in here, you know," Sean scolded.

 "These aren't boots." Matt pointed to one of his white and black shoes. Sean glared at Matt. He was about to say something, but before he could Brian took his arm and led him out of the room.

 "I'm dealing with this, ok Sean? I'll meet you back in the locker room in a few minutes," Brian said.

 "Fine, but bring me some of his blood," Sean grumbled as he walked away.

 "I will," Brian promised, waving goodbye to his partner. Looking around to make sure no one else could see him, Brian went back into the shower room and closed the door. Matt was still lounging against the tiles. Brian went up to Matt and put his hands against the wall on either side of Matt's head.

 "So what do you have to say for yourself?" he demanded ominously.

 "Well, I like the sweater, and I'm really getting the impression Sean doesn't like me," Matt replied.

 Brian smiled. "I'm glad you like it. You look great in it. Why don't you let me take your mind off Sean?" He raised on eyebrow suggestively.

 "I like the sound of that." Matt looked at Brian expectantly.

 Brian reached out to slide the lock on the door closed. "I'd better do that if I'm gonna do this," he explained. He moved forward to press his lips against Matt's. Matt eagerly returned the kiss.

 "I'm glad Sean saw you in that sweater. It gave me an excuse to find you." Brian sighed. "I just wish I could see more of you."

 "You want me to strip?" Matt asked coyly.

 "You know what I meant. And I'd like that, but this isn't really the place. You should probably take that off, though." Brian indicated the sweater. Matt smiled and pulled it off. Beneath it he was wearing a tight black shirt which buttoned up the front. Matt allowed Brian to unbutton his shirt and slip his hand inside. Brian ran his hand gently down Matt's chest.

 "God, I want you so bad, Matt," he breathed. He began kissing Matt's neck insistently. "You're a tease, you know," he said between kisses.

 "I don't mean to be." Matt closed his eyes and leaned his head back to give Brian better access to his neck. "We just haven't had a chance to get together yet." Pleasurable sensations shot through his body as Brian's lips caressed his soft skin. He was disappointed when Brian began to pull back.

 "Oh god, don't stop!" he moaned. He struggled to regain his composure. "On second thought, you'd better. We should be going." He buttoned his shirt back up.

 Brian looked at Matt longingly. "I know." He pulled out a CD and handed it to Matt. "Listen to that tonight," he instructed.

 "I will," Matt promised.

 "I'll talk to you later." Brian stole one more kiss before leaving to return to the DX locker room.

 Matt sighed happily, waiting a moment before exiting the room, just in case anyone was watching. He ran across Jeff and Carra on the way to his dressing room. They were holding hands and smiling at each other.

 "Hey Matt," Jeff greeted. "Sean was looking for you."

 "Yeah, he found me. I'm gonna go get dressed." Matt walked past Jeff and Carra.

 "Hmm, what was that all about?" Jeff wondered. He looked at Carra. She had a glazed look in her eyes. After a moment she blinked and her eyes returned to normal. "Have fun staring off into space?" Jeff teased. Carra giggled and whispered something in Jeff's eyes. He grimaced, almost letting his happy facade slip. "Don't say things like that," he ordered, his grip tightening on her hand.

 "Will you let go of my hand if I promise not to run off?" Carra asked. "It's embarrassing, everyone thinks we're dating."

 "That's what they should think," Jeff told her, "and if anyone asks, that's why you're here, ok?"

 "You worry too much," Carra replied. "I'm way too well trained to be vulnerable, Jeff. So where are we going tonight?" she asked, changing the subject.

 "We're staying in."

 Carra frowned. "I don't think that's a good idea."

 "I say what's a good idea, not you."

 "Remember this afternoon?" Carra demanded. "You took so much shit you could barely stand up! I'm not giving you any more. I don't like the way it makes you act. It makes you violent."

 "It does not," Jeff refuted, rubbing his forearm tensely. "I need more, Carra."

 "Uh-uh. No more tonight," Carra announced.

 Jeff's hand wrapped around her bicep, his nails sinking into her flesh. "I never said you had a choice," he growled, yanking her down the hallway.

Chapter 4

 Matt looked up as Jeff and Carra entered the room. He was already fully dressed in his wrestling gear and was sitting on a stool reading a magazine, his legs propped up on another stool. Jeff stomped into the bathroom without saying a word to his brother.

 Matt frowned. "Is he in a foul mood again? What's wrong with him?"

 "It's just mood swings," Carra volunteered, "It's perfectly natural."

 "Yeah, sure." Matt squinted at Carra's arm. "What happened?" he asked, indicating the thin puncture wounds in her bicep.

 "Oh, nothing," Carra said. ‘Dammit Jeff, you made me bleed!' she thought irritably. She covered her annoyance with a smile for Matt's sake.

 "Can I ask you something kind of personal?" Matt inquired.

 "Shoot." Carra took a seat and propped her legs up like Matt's.

 "Are you sleeping with Jeff? Not that it's any of my business, really. I guess what I should've said was ‘Are you seeing Jeff'," Matt corrected.

 Carra remembered Jeff's lecture about this. "Yes, I'm ‘seeing' him," she forced herself to say. Had Jeff said anything about lying about sleeping with him? She smiled internally. Nope. "I'm not sleeping with him, though." She was about to continue, but she noticed that Matt was no longer looking at her. His face was pale as he reached down to pick something up from the floor. He held it with two fingers, touch it as little as possible. It was a small syringe, attached to a long, covered needle.

 "I think this fell out of Jeff's bag." Matt voice was small and scared. He looked up at Carra. "What is this? Is this yours?" he demanded accusingly. What are you yelling about, Matt?" Jeff asked as he emerged from the bathroom. He stoped dead in his tracks when he caught sight of the syringe in Matt's hand.

 "Jeff, what is this?" Matt asked, concern and worry plastered across his face.

 Jeff tried to smile. "That was here when we got here, silly. I really wouldn't touch that, who knows where that's been."

 Matt quickly cast the syringe down. He looked extremely relieved. "Thank god!" he exclaimed. "I thought it was yours!"

 "What would I be doing with a syringe?" Jeff punched his brother's shoulder good- naturedly.

 "You're right. I'm sorry," Matt apologized.

 "It's ok. Man, look at the time," Jeff noticed as he slid his watch off and pulled his arm bands on. "We've gotta get going. You all ready?"

 Matt nodded. "You go ahead then, I'll be along in a moment," Jeff suggested. As soon as Matt had gone, he snatched up the syringe and shoved it into his bag. He turned angrily on Carra. "You should be more careful. You were the one carrying that bad. Do you want Matt to think I'm a drug addict or something?"

 "Aren't you?" That sent Jeff over the edge. He charged up to Carra and shoved her with all his might. She smacked into the wall, sinking to the floor with a slight whimper.

 "Next time you mess up, you say it's yours," Jeff said coldly. He spun on his heel and left.

 A few minutes later a knock came at the door. "Guys? If you're not gone, you should be." Sean peaked into the room. Good, no Hardyz. Maybe he could look around a little... It took him a moment to notice the woman sitting slumped against the wall. He rushed over to see if she was alright. She was conscious, she just looked a little dazed.

 "Are you ok?" Sean asked.

 "Yeah, I'm fine." The woman slowly rose to her feet, using his arm for support. "I just tripped in the wrong place." Sean struggled to find words. He hadn't realized how very beautiful she was until she was looking him eye to eye. He was instantly smitten with her.

 "Um, you're Jeff's - friend, right?" he finally got out.

 Carra nodded. "Yeah, I've been hanging around with Jeff."

 "Well, I guess I should go." He didn't want to leave her, but he did have a match. "Maybe we could go out later, though, after the show's over."

 Carra smiled. "I'd like that. I'll meet you after your match, ok?"

 "Great." Sean was smiling as he left the room. She wanted to go out with him! He felt strangely soft and warm inside. He had only seen her a few times, but one look in her eyes had been all he needed to know that he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her. As promised, she met him after the show. He felt tongue-tied around her. He was afraid he would say something stupid to her and she would lose interest.

 "Would you like to go to dinner?" he asked her.

 Carra smiled. He loved her smile. It was so beautiful. "That would be nice."

 He took her to the nicest restaurant he could find. He managed to keep a friendly conversation going with her during their meal. She seemed to be enjoying herself, as she was constantly laughing and smiling. She had a beautiful, musical laugh that filled his heart with joy. She seemed especially interested when he mentioned a special book he had picked up.

 "It has beautiful illustrations, and a fascinating story. The layout is just beautiful," he was saying.

 "I'd like to see it," Carra replied, "Why don't we go to your room?"

 Sean's heart jumped. Was she suggesting what he thought she was? "Really?" he asked.

 "Yeah." She smiled brightly and took his hand. "Let's go."

Chapter 5

 Sean was disappointed when he woke up and found himself alone. "Carra?" he called, hoping she was just out of his sight. No one answered. He sighed. He looked around, but she hadn't left a note. That was probably a good sign. Besides, he would see her later that night. As soon as he reached the arena, he went to look for her. He found her walking down the hall toward the Hardy Boyz's dressing room. She stopped when he called out to her.

 "I wish you would've stayed this morning," Sean said.

 "I'm sorry," Carra replied, "but I felt I should leave."

 "Why?" Sean asked. Carra shrugged. "Well, it doesn't matter. I'd like to take you out again tonight," Sean offered.

 "I don't think tonight would work for me."

 Sean was starting to get a bad feeling about this. "What about tomorrow, then?" he suggested.

 "Tomorrow's not good either."

 "When can I see you again?" Sean asked. He had to see her again. He had never felt so strongly about anything. He wanted to take her to dinner, he wanted to buy her gifts, he wanted to whisper beautiful things in her ear. He thought his heart would explode if he couldn't.

 "You're blowing me off, aren't you?" he demanded, "You're blowing me off!"

 Carra looked at the ground. "I'm sorry, Sean, but it just wouldn't work."

 "It could work! I'd make it work!" Sean insisted. "Give me a chance!"

 Carra shook her head. "I'm sorry," she repeated.

 Sean found himself fighting tears. "Why did you sleep with me, then?" he asked, "Why, if you knew it couldn't work? Why did you lead me on like that?" Carra just shrugged. "You can't do this to me!" Sean cried. "I am not a one night stand!" She still did not answer. He had to leave. He felt his heart breaking. He turned and ran to the DX locker room. Brian was already there. Sean tried to conceal his pain. He sat down on a bench and began pulling out his equipment.

 "What's wrong, Sean?" Brian asked, noticing the deep frown on his friend's face.

 Sean dropped his gear and crossed his arms. He took deep breathes to try and get control of his emotions. He couldn't cry in front of Brian! "I feel used," he whispered.

 Brian looked concerned. He put down his own gear and focused on Sean. "What do you mean?"

 "I've fallen in love, Brian!" The tear were getting more insistent. He could hold them back for much longer.

 "That's not a bad thing, Sean," Brian assured him.

 Tears were filling his eyes now. He hid his face in his hands. "She doesn't want me. She just used me!" He couldn't stop the tears anymore. He was glad when Brian pulled him into a comforting hug. Brian was shocked. He had never seen his friend cry before.

 "Who is it?" he inquired softly.

 "Carra," Sean replied, "Jeff Hardy's friend, Carra."

 "Oh, her." Brian had picked up Matt's distrust of Jeff's new friend. "How did she use you?" Brian asked.

 "Well, I just really met her yesterday, but I knew, I knew as soon as I looked in her eyes that I loved her. So I asked her out, and she said yes. We went out to dinner, and it was really, really nice. Then we went back to my room, and - well, you know." Brian nodded. Sean had to swallow before continuing. "But she left before I woke up, and when I tried to talk to her today, she just blew me off. She said it just wouldn't work, and she wouldn't give me a reason. She wouldn't give me a chance."

 Brian shoulder was growing wet from Sean's tears, but he wasn't about to deny his friend the support he so clearly needed. "I should've used my brain!" Sean continued. "I should've remembered the rules! You don't sleep together the first night, not if you want something real. You have to get to know each other first. You have to be friends. I should've known she didn't really care."

 At that moment, Jean Paul came walking into the room. He blinked in surprise when he saw Sean crying in Brian's arms. "What's going on?" he asked in concern. Sean tried to wipe his tears away before Jean Paul saw, but it was too late.

 "Sean's having some problems with women," Brian explained.

 "Oh." Jean Paul looked worried. "There isn't a pregnancy involved, is there?"

 "No!" Sean cried, shaking his head.

 "What is it, then?" Jean Paul sat down on the bench next to Sean.

 "Just a broken heart," Sean said sadly, staring listlessly off into space.

 "Oh. That's too bad." Jean Paul frowned. "I didn't know you were seeing anyone, though."

 "I just met her yesterday." Sean was beginning to regain control of himself. He picked up his gear again and started getting dressed.

 "Who?" Jean Paul wanted to know.

 "Carra," Sean replied. He didn't feel like explaining who that was.

 Jean Paul furrowed his brow. "You mean Jeff Hardy's girlfriend?"

 "She's not his girlfriend!" Sean protested.

 "She is according to her and Jeff." Jean Paul stopped speaking. "I'm sorry, this probably isn't helping."

 Sean looked confused. "But she couldn't be dating Jeff! If she was, she wouldn't have slept with me. She'd be cheating on him then."

 "You slept with her? On the day you met her? That's not like you, Sean," Jean Paul remarked.

 "I know." Sean sniffed. "I guess it was mostly her idea. I know why now. She didn't really want me, she just wanted me for one night."

 "And you wanted more?"

 Sean nodded. "I love her, Jean Paul, I know I do. I want to spend my life with her."

 "I know about that feeling." He thought of Joanie. He suppressed the smile that came to him when he thought about how much he loved her. He couldn't smile now, when Sean was in so much pain.

 Sean looked at Jean Paul pleadingly. "What do I do, Jean Paul? I want her to love me."

 "If she's with Jeff, there's not much you can do." Jean Paul knew it wasn't what Sean wanted to hear, but he wasn't going to lie.

 "If she is ‘with' him, she clearly doesn't care about him very much!" Sean exclaimed.

 "And did she act like she cared about you?" Jean Paul didn't like having to do this, but it was in Sean's best interests.

 Sean sighed. "No." He stared blankly into space. "Will this feeling pass?" he asked.

 "Give it a little time and see," Jean Paul advised him.

 "I'll try," Sean said, "I'll just have to try that."

Chapter 6

 Carra entered the dressing room casually. She found Jeff inside, alone. When he saw her, an angry expression grew on his face. "Where were you last night?" he demanded.

 "Out," Carra replied vaguely, "I go out a lot."

 Jeff glared at her suspiciously. "You weren't in your room all night. I checked."

 "Well, maybe I was with someone." Carra cried out as Jeff's hand smacked her across the face. She narrowed her eyes, clutching her injured cheek. "You ass!" She shoved him back into the lockers. He began advancing toward her menacingly.

 "Wait, Jeff." She held out her hand to stop him. "I've made a decision. I want to go back home."

 "Absolutely not!"

 "It's not that I don't like being here," Carra explained, "But I've been here for a while, and it's really enough."

 "But we're not finished yet!" Jeff protested.

 "We never will be, Jeff. You know that."

 "You're not going anywhere until I say you are."

 "It would be best for you if I leave. You're getting addicted and you know it," Carra said, "You're going to permanently scar yourself." She pulled his armband down to reveal the healing track marks in his arm.

 "They'll heal," Jeff snapped, replacing the armband. "And you'll stay."

 Carra sighed. "Fine. I'll stay for a few more days." She turned around and left the room.

After leaving Sean in Jean Paul's care, Brian had gone to find Matt. He wondered if Matt had listened to the CD. If he had, it certainly hadn't had the desired effect. He ran into Matt after a few minutes. He was glad to see that no one else was around.

 "Hey," he said in a friendly tone, "Did you listen to that CD I gave you?"

 Matt looked surprised. "Oh, gosh. I'm sorry. I completely forgot."

 "That's ok, just remember to listen to it tonight, ok?"

 Matt nodded. Brian gave him a quick kiss on the cheek before departing. That night, Matt pulled out the CD and examined it. Jeff was out with Carra at the moment, so he was alone. It was a group he had heard of before; he thought maybe he'd heard one of their songs on the radio.

 "Alice Cooper, ‘Trash'," he read. 80's metal. He had a pretty good idea what the subject of the CD was. That was confirmed when he stuck the CD into his CD player and listened to it. Gee, why could Brian have given him this? He was smiling broadly as the last notes faded. He picked up the phone to call Brian.

 "Hello?" Matt slammed the phone down.

 "Hello?" Sean demanded again. He dropped the receiver back into place.

 "What was that?" Brian asked.

 "I don't know, they just hung up when I answered," Sean replied.

 "Oh. Ok." Brian waited a few minutes, then slipped out into the hall. He found a phone and dialed Matt's room number.

 "Hello?" Matt answered.

 "You called?"

 "Yeah, sorry. I panicked when Sean picked up," Matt replied sheepishly.

 "No problem. So?"

 "I listened to the CD," Matt said.


 "And I think I can arrange for Jeff to be gone tonight."

 Brian smiled. "Exactly what I wanted to hear."

 "I bet it is. I'll buzz your room when its safe for you to come up, ok?"

 "Ok. See you soon." Brian was smiling broadly as he hung up the phone. About half an hour later the signal came. Sean was already asleep, so Brian had no trouble slipping out unnoticed. He knocked softly on the door to Matt's room when he reached it. Matt opened the door and let Brian in, a rather mischievous smile on his face. Before saying anything, Brian took matt in his arms and kissed him tenderly.

 "How can you be sure Jeff won't return?" Brian whispered.

 Matt chuckled and held up two plastic cards. "Because I have both keys."

 "Won't he be mad?" Brian asked as Matt slipped out of his arms and walked over to the night stand to remove his watch. He watched with delight as Matt pulled off his shirt.

 "He can't blame me if he ‘forgot' his key and I was ‘sleeping' when he came back," Matt stated impishly. His gaze ran down Brian's body hungrily. "Now come here."

Matt felt warm all over when he woke up the next morning. He turned to gaze at the man sleeping next to him and sighed contentedly. He softly ran his fingers down Brian's cheek. Brian stirred and opened his eyes. He returned Matt's happy smile.

 "Good morning," Brian said.

 "It certainly is," Matt replied, "And it was a wonderful night."

 Brian sighed. "I just wish I could stay longer."

 "I don't want you to go." Matt rested his head on Brian's chest and closed his eyes.

 "I know." Brian stroked Matt's hair gently. "But I have to leave before Jeff comes back."

 "I suppose." Matt kissed Brian deeply before he allowed him to rise. Brian dressed slowly, trying to stretch the moment out as long as he could. Matt decided to get up and get dressed also. When Brian was fully dressed, he headed reluctantly for the door.

 "Bye, Matt," he said as he left, still smiling broadly. "I'll see you later."

Chapter 7

 Jeff was in a foul mood as RAW kicked off the following week. Carra was getting more insistent in her requests to return home. He refused to let her go. It had taken him months of work to get her there in the first place. Also, he had a feeling that Matt was getting suspicious. He knew his brother hadn't fully believed his story about the syringe.

 Jeff was in their dressing room with Matt and Carra, preparing for the show that night. He was distracted by his thoughts, so he hesitated a moment before reaching for his armband. It was enough of a delay for Matt to catch a glimpse of his bare forearm. Before he knew it, Matt had snatched his arm and was staring at it.

 "Jeff," Matt began, his voice extremely worried, "What is this?" He touched the marks on Jeff's arm.

 "Nothing, just a scratch." Jeff tried to pull his arm away, but Matt's grip was like stone. "I know what these are. They're track marks. That was your syringe, wasn't it?" Matt's voice faltered as he spoke.

 Carra chuckled. "Busted, Jeff!"

 "Shut up!" Jeff yelled at her. He managed to yank his arm free.

 "Jeff, tell me what's going on!" Matt cried.

 "I'll tell you," Carra volunteered.

 "No you won't! You'll shut your mouth!" Jeff leapt up and struck Carra in the face with his fist. She was knocked off the bench from the force of his blow.

 "Jeff!!" Matt jumped to his feet.

 Jeff whirled on Matt. His eyes were blazing with anger. "Fuck off, Matt! If you don't, I'll tell Brian's wife about you two!" Matt turned white. Jeff stormed out of the room before Matt could respond.

 "He won't tell," Carra said, picked herself up off the floor. She was holding her hand over her eye.

 Matt swallowed. "Are you ok?" he asked, trying to forget about what Jeff had just said.

 "I'll be fine."

 "Let me see." Carra reluctantly dropped her hand. Matt winced at what he saw. The bruise was forming already. "You're going to have one hell of a black eye," he stated.

 "I know." Carra poked her injured skin and winced in pain.

 "Has Jeff ever done this before?" Matt asked in concern.

 "Maybe." Carra shrugged. "Don't worry, Matt. Your brother doesn't scare me."

 "He shouldn't be hitting you," Matt stated. He sat down and put his head in his hands. "I don't know what's wrong with him. I mean - drugs? And violence?"

 "Matt, maybe you can help me." Carra's tone of voice had changed. "I want to go home, but he won't let me. With you help, I think I can make him."

 Matt looked up in confusion. "I don't understand," he said.

 "I'll explain it to you later. Until then, don't worry about it." She set her hand on his shoulder reassuringly. "You'll get your brother back."

After the show, Sean was sitting in the DX locker room thinking. Jean Paul noticed the broody look on his face, but he didn't disturb his friend's contemplation. "Jean?" Sean said after a few minutes. Jean Paul looked up. "I've been thinking about Carra," Sean continued. "You know how she says she's dating Jeff? Well - I don't think that he's treating her very well."

 "Sean, if you're jealous - "

 "No, no," Sean interrupted, "I mean - I think he might be abusing her."

 "That's a serious accusation, Sean," Jean Peal said.

 "I know. But have you noticed how she seems to be scraped up a lot? Like bruises and stuff. I think he's doing it."

 "Well, I have noticed - " Jean Paul left off in the middle of his sentence when he heard the door open. The subject of their conversation stepped into the room.

 "Oh my god, what happened?" Sean cried as he noticed Carra's black eye.

 Carra ignored his question. "Can I talk to you alone for a moment?" she asked, glancing at Jean Paul.

 "Um, I guess I should go find Joanie," Jean Paul said, excusing himself from the room. Carra sat down next to Sean.

 "Did Jeff do that to you?" Sean asked tenderly.

 "It's not important what Jeff's doing," Carra replied, "It's important what he's NOT doing. That's why I need your help."

 "What do you mean?" Sean was puzzled.

 "I need you to help me go home, Sean."

 "You can't leave." Sean took Carra's hand and pressed it to his cheek. "I love you, Carra."

 "See how you feel after I explain," Carra said. She began to tell him what only she and Jeff knew.

Matt was searching for Brian. He needed to talk with him about what Jeff had said. Once he found Brian, he pulled him into his and Jeff's dressing room. Jeff had already left, so he knew they wouldn't be disturbed.

 "What's wrong?" Brian asked.

 "Jeff knows about us," Matt supplied.

 "How?" Brian's eyes were wide and he looked worried.

 "I don't know."

 "Is he upset? Is he going to tell anybody?"

 Matt shook his head. "I don't know. I don't think he'll tell. He's using drugs, Brian." Matt's eyes teared up.

 "You're serious?" Matt nodded. "For how long?"

 "I don't know. I don't know what's wrong with him. It had something to do with Carra. She said some strange things, but she wouldn't really explain. I saw him hit her, Brian. Right in front of me!" Matt wrapped his arms around Brian and rested his head on Brian's shoulder. Brian rubbed Matt's back comfortingly. "Carra said she'd tell me more. She implied there was more going on. She said to meet here in her room tonight. Could you come with me?"

 "Wouldn't that look odd?" Brian pointed out.

 Matt shrugged. "She knows already. I don't think anyone else will be there." He pulled back to look into Brian's eyes.

 "Alright then. You know I'll always be there for you when I can." Brian brushed Matt's hair tenderly out of his face.

 "I love you, Brian," Matt whispered. He stared down at the floor. Was it wrong of him to say that?

 "I love you too," came the tender response.

 Matt looked up. "Really?"

 "You knew that, Matt. I love you," Brian said again.

 Matt pulled Brian into a tight embrace. "It feels so good to hear that!" he exclaimed. The two couldn't bare to part after their emotional exchange. They traveled back to the hotel together and headed for Carra's room. She answered the door at their knock. They were surprised to find Sean already sitting in the room. He looked surprised to see Brian.

 "I didn't know you were coming, Bri," Sean said.

 "Well, I didn't know either, but Matt asked me to come," Brian explained.

 "I knew he was your new best friend." Sean looked sour for a moment.

 Carra interrupted their conversation. "Jeff should be back soon. We need to go over what's going to happen. Sean, you know already. You can help me tell Matt and Brian." She looked up at the two she had just mentioned. "I'll explain now."

Chapter 8

 Matt and Brian were staring at Carra in disbelief. Without realizing it, Brian had snaked an arm around Matt and was holding his shoulders protectively. Sean was looking at them curiously, but they didn't notice.

 "Come again?" Brian managed to get out.

 "Alright. I'll sum it up." Carra paused and took a deep breath. "I come from another dimension. Jeff figured out how to contact me. That was months ago, by your time. He worked on finding a way to bring me here, and eventually he did. I came to see this place for myself. I've studied your world for years, and I jumped at the chance to actually come. But I just wanted to visit briefly. Jeff wanted me to stay longer. When I came, I brought with me this fluid." Carra held up a jar filled with a white liquid. "It was a gift for Jeff, for helping me come. It puts your body in basically a state of hyper-sensitivity that allows you to pick up transmissions from my world. When he took it, it allowed him to learn a great deal about my world. I didn't count on the effect it would have on him, though. Apparently it's addictive to humans. He just wanted to know more and more. When I told him I was ready to leave, he refused to let me go. He wasn't willing to give up that ability to gain knowledge. It's not good for him, though. Not in the amount he's been consuming it." Carra looked around at the faces of the men before her. "He won't want me to leave. You're here to force him to let go. He had to choose to release me and help me or I can't go."

 "What do we do?" Brian asked.

 "Convince him to release me. I won't be able to help you. In order to get the power to cross dimensions, I'm going to have to take all of this." Carra held up the jar again. "I'll be unconscious once I do. Jeff has to initiate the procedure."

 "I understand," Brian said. He squeezed Matt's shoulder reassuringly. "Do you, Matt?" He was too distracted to remember to hide his affection. Sean noticed, but didn't say anything. Matt nodded.

 "Good. He'll be back very soon. We'd better get started." Carra unscrewed the jar and stuck her fingers into the liquid. It began to sink into her skin. Carra sucked in her breathe sharply and gritted her teeth. "Direct absorbtion is rather painful," she explained as more sunk in, "but it's the only way to do it quickly." She had to sit down as the jar began to empty. As the last drop disappeared into her skin, her eyes rolled up in her head and she fainted. Sean ran to catch her before she fell. He held her limp form in her arms, gently stroking her blonde curls.

 A few minutes later they heard Jeff approaching. Sean set Carra down gently on the floor where she had instructed him to.

 Jeff frowned when he entered the room and found them there. "What are you all doing here?" he snapped.

 "You have to send her back." Sean moved out of the way to reveal the unconscious Carra.

 "No! Not yet." Jeff's voice sounded pleading. "She can't go back yet. I have so much more to learn!"

 Matt set his hand on his brother's arm. "You can still learn, Jeff, like you did before she came."

 "But it's better when she's here!" Jeff protested.

 "Jeff, please." Matt glanced at Carra. "We shouldn't leave her like this for very long."

 Jeff looked into his brother's eyes. He was battling himself inside. He knew he should release her, but he still wanted more. He forced himself to act before his addiction could stop him. He pulled several strange objects out of the suitcase at his side. He placed them around Carra in a circle. With his mind and a few whispered words, he activated the circle. The objects began to glow. A ring of light rose up between them, engulfing Carra's body. Matt backed into Brian's arms, who held him tightly while they watched, their eyes wide.

 The light climbed up through the air, forming a thick, glowing pillar that stretched to the ceiling. The beams of light lifted Carra's still form, pushing her up until she was floating in an upright position. It was her hands that began to change first. The flesh seemed to fade, melt away into tiny points of lights. Her whole body was shifting into light. Her form could still be seen, held together as a million tiny points of flickering light. Her eyes opened as they turned to light, and the pink drops of light that formed her lips curved up in a smile. She held up her hand to wave goodbye to them.

 Suddenly, Sean leapt forward. His eyes were wild with fear. "Please don't leave me, Carra!" he cried. "Take me with you! Please take me with you!" He tried to reach through the circle of light, finding it impossible to penetrate the barrier and reach the woman he loved.

 "Are you sure you want to come? My world is very different." Carra spoke not with her voice but with a whisper in their minds.

 "Yes. I love you, I have to be with you!" Sean declared. Carra's glowing eyes focused on Sean. Her arm reached out through the barrier, a glowing beam of light that lit the air around it. Sean took her hand, finding it solid to his touch. She drew him slowly through the ring of light. He gasped as he felt his body changing and transforming. He too faded into pointed of light.

 "Goodbye," he whispered into the others' minds, "I'll keep in touch." He was smiling as the light making up his body began to fade. Carra was disappearing with him. The light around them died down as the last traces of them vanished. The three still in the room were left speechless. Brian had taken a seat in one of the chairs. Matt was sitting on his lap, leaning his head back on Brian's shoulder. Brian still had his arms around Matt.

 "I'll show you how to talk to them, later," Jeff said, gathering the objects off the floor. "I assume you'll want to?" He stuck the objects back in his suitcase.

 "Oh, yes." Matt shook his head to snap out of his daze. Realizing he and Brian were rather obvious at the moment, he started to stand.

 "It's ok," Jeff said, motioning for Matt to sit back down. Matt gladly returned to Brian's comforting arms. "Listen, I'm sorry I've been suck a jerk recently," Jeff apologized as he sat in the chair facing Matt and Brian. "I wasn't myself. I thought I was prepared to handle it, but I guess I wasn't." He gazed at Matt and Brian. "So you two really are together?"

 Matt nodded. "Is - is that ok with you?" he asked hesitantly.

 Jeff shrugged. "It's your life. Does it matter what I think?"

 "Of course it does, Jeff. I want to know."

 "Well - how do you feel about him?" Jeff looked at Brian. "I mean, are you just goofing around, or is it more?"

 "More." Matt gazed into Brian's eyes. "I love him."

 Jeff nodded, mulling that over. He directed his next question to Brian. "And how do you feel about my brother?"

 Brian tightened his grip on Matt. "I love him very much." Jeff didn't say anything.

 "Jeff?" Matt asked. He prayed that Jeff could accept this. He couldn't stand the thought of losing his only brother.

 Jeff paused a moment before speaking. "If you two really love each other, then you should be together," he said at last. "And I'll support you in any way you need me to, Matt."

 Matt had tears in his eyes as he listened to Jeff speak. "I love you, Jeff," he said, moving to pull his brother into an affectionate hug. "You're the best brother ever."

 "Thanks. I love you, too." Jeff returned Matt's hug, blinking tears out of his own eyes. "Brian?" Jeff held out his arm for his brother's lover. "I guess you're part of the family now, too," Jeff said.

 "That means a lot to me," Brian replied, hugging both brothers at the same time.

 Jeff smiled at Matt. "Brothers forever, right? Through hell and high water, we'll still have each other!"

 "No matter what happens, Jeff," Matt agreed, his voice heavy with emotion, "we'll always have each other."


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The Sequel:
Together Forever

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